Chris’ Mix (Vol. 1): Music I Discovered in 2008 – Playlists on Parade

By Chris Moore:

As promised, this second edition of Playlists on Parade will feature my first “music discovery” playlist.  For those that missed the first post, I wanted to put together a series of my favorite songs of 2008.  Rather than restrict the lineup to those songs that had been newly released in 2008, I decided to include my favorite songs I had first heard during the year.

Now, I should note that I put this list together in late April of 2009, so I lumped in a few songs that were technically released in 2009.  That being said, I was careful this year (2010) to make a more pure 2009 version for the second volume.

I hope you’ll enjoy the brief notes I’ve included below, and that you’ll check out these great tracks if you haven’t already heard them!

1)  “I Got You” – Stone Temple Pilots

If you like “Sour Girl,” then this is a second STP song you should listen to.  Not as dynamic as “Sour Girl,” but a great track nonetheless.

2)  “Pot Kettle Black” – Wilco

Up until the 2010 release of BnL’s “You Run Away,” this was my number one most-listened-to song on my iPod hands-down.  And there’s a reason:  this is one of the best little numbers off Wilco’s turn-of-the-millennium classic Yankee Hotel Foxtrot.

3)  “What Love Can Do” – Bruce Springsteen

(Okay, so this is technically from 2009 and should have ended up on Volume Two…)  Why this wasn’t the lead-off single for Working on a Dream, I’ll never know.

4)  “The Joke’s On Me” – Jordan Zevon

Compared to his father, a legend and a genius of a songwriter, Jordan Zevon’s album falls a bit short.  Still, there are some winners, like this wonderfully sardonic track.

5)  “Low Light” – Pearl Jam

I actually included this PJ song not because it was my favorite, but rather because it seemed to fit the straightforward rock and roll feel I was trying to set with this playlist.  A subtle, but superb track.

6)  “Come Around” – The Counting Crows

A great track off of what is perhaps the second greatest Counting Crows album, Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings – my choice for first would, of course, be Recovering the Satellites.  “Come Around” has it all: it’s upbeat, catchy, and is lyrically and instrumentally entertaining.

7)  “Supernatural Superserious” – R.E.M.

I was generally non-plussed by most of R.E.M.’s albums and deep tracks that I had heard before Accelerate, but “Supernatural Superserious” is an exemplary sample from what has quickly become one of my favorite rock albums.

8)  “At Least We Made It This Far” – Relient K

Relient K is a band that I grow fonder of with each new release, and 2008’s EP was no exception.  While my jaw dropping was reserved for a piano version of “Who I Am Hates Who I’ve Been,” the slot on this playlist had to go to this new track.

9)  “Brother” – Pearl Jam

What a lost gem!  It’s not so difficult to see why Jeff Ament almost quit Pearl Jam when Stone Gossard held firm to his desire not to play this song any longer.  Phenomenal.

10)  “Looking Forward to Seeing You” – The Golden Smog

This is a pretty good sampling of the Golden Smog sound, including some background work by Jeff Tweedy.

11)  “Impossible Germany” – Wilco

I discovered Wilco in 2008, and they were the band that I listened to more than any other that year.  I was going through some sadness, particularly in the last third of the year, and Wilco’s sound was what I needed for commiseration and for a rebirth.  For an example of the latter, I’ve included “Impossible Germany.”  Please take note of the beautiful dual guitar solos.

12)  “Hey, That’s No Way to Say Goodbye”  – Leonard Cohen

I went back in time a bit farther for this classic Cohen track.  He was a singer/songwriter that I had certainly heard of, but had never actually heard any songs performed by him.  This was one of my favorites, even more so after I figured it out on guitar.

This is one in a series of acoustic cover songs, original music, and free mp3 downloads here on the Laptop Sessions Music Video Blog.

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